THE HOOSIERS BRING THEIR "THE TRICK TO LIFE" 10 YEAR ANNIVERSARY TOUR TO GLASGOW
I’m climbing the stairs out of the bar towards the gig area in Tuts and the first muffled notes of the support act, Zeals, drift down. I've not been to Tuts in a while, so am really looking forward to this.
Zeals are a three piece - drums, two guitars and vocals, an odd set up. My first impression is they look like a bit of a mismatch on stage, the lead singer is tall with a large mop of dark curly locks bunched up on top of his head and has a very cool swagger. The drummer is very groomed with a millimetre perfect beard and the lead guitarist is sort of short with what seems like a totally different look.
Unfortunately this mismatch in looks translates to the music too. The lead singers voice is fabulous and powerful with an impressive range. He has energy and is a good performer, although his on stage chat seems to be limited to 'this is the best gig we have done' and 'are we having a good time Glasgow?'. The drumming is tight and precise keeping things driving along. The lead guitar is very rocky, a heavily distorted processed sound which seems lost as it’s too strong a sound for the song type and too weak a sound to drive the tracks. The song writing seems pop but there aren’t too many hooks.
The bassist from the main act, The Hoosiers, comes on to help out with a really good cover of The Police song "Roxanne", this was the highlight for me. A highly energetic opening which helps get the packed room in the mood.
The Hoosiers come on stage on time to a rapturous reception from what seems to be an adoring crowd for the UK based sons of Indiana. The four of them stand at the front of the stage holding aloft a couple of letters each spelling the band name then they settle down into, surprisingly, "Worried About Ray", I thought they would keep the hits for later.
The crowd are into it from the off. The lead singer in a red top and blazer, singing accurate vocals. The band are tight, the vocal harmonies are spot on and there's an assured confidence about them. The keyboard/trumpet player is sporting a straw boater and fetching moustache and beard, it is a distinctive look. There is a comedy element to the performance with some strange banana antics mid-song and some conversational exchanges between the band which are a bit cheesy.
"Worst Case Scenario" and "Run Rabbit Run" are followed by "Goodbye Mr A", the Tuts crowd throbbing to the energetic pop tunes. A change of pace for "Sadness Runs Through Him" and some chanting from the crowd of 'Here we, here we, here we f***in’ go!’. "Cops And Robbers" elicits the biggest reaction of the night from the Glasgow punters and this seems like what they have been chanting for. The energy falls through for the next song "Everything Goes Dark" then lifts again for "Killer" and stays up for set closer "The Trick to Life" and the band leave the stage but no one is leaving the crowd.
The band come back on for the encore with "Money To Be Made" and "Pristine" and there is a real euphoria in the room, the whole set seems feel good and up beat. More chanting ensues urging the band to get on with it. A couple of covers thrown in of the Weeknd’s "Can't Feel My Face" and Billy Joel’s "We Didn’t Start The Fire" and then closing with "Choices", which made the encore almost as long as the main set, good value.
A great set of up beat, feel good songs. Crowd pleasers, almost every one delivered with an energy that kept the night flowing. Although they could streamline the between song chat, I would go see them again.
THE HOOSIERS TOUR CONTINUES:
Sat November 4th 2017 - DONCASTER The Diamond Lounge
Sun 5th November 2017 - LINCOLN The Engine Shed
Mon 6th November 2017 - ST ALBANS The Horn